With over thousands of bars, clubs and pubs I’m not going into too much detail about which venues you want to visit. Mostly I will try to explain which places I like in which areas and why. But I cannot go over all venues, sorry.. There is just too much to mention. However there are quite a few great areas that are great and typical for the Singapore Nightlife scene. All areas attract different crowds and kinds of people. This I would like to show you with this article. Basically I go to 3 areas to go out: the Singapore Riverside, Clubstreet and Arabstreet.
Ah, AND MOST IMPORTANT: How to get around while getting a round: the drinks can be quite expensive sometimes in Singapore. So first I explain you how the drinks work in Singapore. Because you need to know there is promotion in any bar at anytime anywhere in this great city!
Singapore Nightlife: Promotions & Happy Hours
Almost all bars, clubs, pubs and restaurants have happy hours and promotions. If you don’t mind paying about S$15 for a pint or a glass of wine than this doesn’t matter that much. However if your budget doesn’t last an eternity then you really want to look out for a happy hour or other promotions to experience the Singapore Nightlife at it’s fullest. Basically each bar has its own times for happy hours, with some bars even have the whole day happy hour. Then, a drink will set you back around S$8,- per beverage, which matters a lot. Some venues also have other promotions such as 90min unlimited refills, power-hours (drinks get more expensive by the hour) and other discounts that make the Singapore nightlife a bit more sustainable.
Hawker-centers: Affordable, Local & Adventurous
Yet not the Singapore Nightlife at it’s best, my favorite place for a beer is at one of the many Hawker Centers. Basically this is a food court with many street food vendors and locals coming together. A must visit in Singapore if you ask me.
Anyway, a beer at a Hawker Center will set you back around S$6.50 for a huge beer (650ml). And when you buy 3 beers you get the 4th for free. However cheap, don’t go there to please your wallet. Go there because this is the place to go if you’re a bit more adventures!
Have a drink with the locals, sit at a table with some Chinese men and discuss the day. Singapore has a lot of culture to offer and when you want to experience this at its most: go to a Hawker center. It’s a great place, down to earth and you will meet the nicest people in the world! Even if they don’t speak any English, after a beer or two this doesn’t matter anymore.
The best place to have a drink in a hawkercenter is Chinatown. Go to the peoples park hawkercenter (★★★★ YELP) at the end of Upper Crosstreet. Very nice people, a down to earth atmosphere and there is nothing like it in Singapore.
Singapore Nightlife: Areas to consider
Riverside, Chinatown & Arabstreet
The best places for a late afternoon drink, evening beverage or to experience the Singapore Nightlife scene is the Riverside Area, Chinatown-Clubstreet and to a bit lesser extent (but worth it!!!) the Arabstreet-area. Because the rooftop bars in Singapore are a thing on their own I have dedicated a whole article about it here. But for now please read all about where to go in Singapore and why. Each area is its own crowd and venues. From nice terraces to sit outside under the trees to clubs and discotheques, all in a walking distance from each other at the Singapore Riverside Area. The Singapore Riverside area consists of basically 3 areas: Robertson Quay, Clarke Quay and Boat Quay. Likewise Clubstreet is an area comprised of multiple streets in the heart of Chinatown where the Singapore nightlife is unheard of. Arabstreet are also basically a few streets with more a lounge and artistic atmosphere.
Singapore Nightlife: Robertson Quay
Robertson Quay is most popular under the working crowd. The Singapore Nightlife might a bit less pronounced however all the bars stay open till late. All the bars have a great terrace to sit and have a drink outside. Also many of the venues provide a great place to watch football, tennis, formula 1 and other sports. If you like to sit outside with your friends in the most idyllic setting of Singapore this is the place to go! The prices of drinks and food are very affordable and are of a higher level of quality then anywhere else in Singapore.
If you ask me that is… For example there is a great Japanese Brewery called Kanpai 789 which serves pints of home brewed beers for about S$8 a pint. And the snacks, such as their famous “Truffel Fries” are out of this world. Also the pizza place Hannibal is more than amazing. Sit outside and enjoy a cold one while eating a half a meter pizza while watching the game. There is also a great and very intimate Wiskey Bar (La Maison de Whisky) at Robertson Quay which for all wiskey lovers is a must visit! A litte down the river you will find a place called Bar Bar Black Sheep (BBBS) which is also a nice an unique place to visit. The place is divided in 3 individual restaurants which all have a different menu. Thai, Indian and Western food that is will rock your evening. The micro brew beers a bit more expensive than the rest of Roberson Quay, the quality is likewise of a very high standard! A unique experience! Last but not least the “Wine Connection” at Robertson Quay is a must visit for all wine lovers. They have an outstanding wine menu with over a 100 wines. The service is great at the Wine Connection and for the price of a bottle of wine á S$35 not a bad place to start your evening exploring the Singapore nightlife in the weekend!
Singapore Nightlife: Clarke Quay
Clarke Quay is famous of its clubs, bars and party scene. Although many youngsters come here to celebrate weekend and not weekend (it’s always crowed at Clarke Quay) also many older people and tourists visit this Riverside area. The Clarke Quay Nightlife is thé Singapore Nightlife. The whole place is just amazing if you’re in to dancing, party and good music. Most bars offer life music that is bigger than life and the clubs and discotheques have famous DJ getting you through the night. During the day you can get a good promotion on a drink, however in the evening you need to search a bit more. But forget about your budget for a moment and just hit the town for a great night out in Clarke Quay!
One of the best, and oldest clubs in Singapore, is Zouk. And if you’re into dance music this is the place to go. The venue is in an old warehouse, many of the places around the Riverside are, and is comprised of a few areas that all have a different setting. Be sure to dress up a bit and make your way into one of the hippest places of the Singapore nightlife.
Also worth while checking out when you’re in Clarke quay is the Trace Lounge. I mean venue is just spot on. They really didn’t cheap out on the disco light and lasers! The place has a bit more of an underground feeling than club Zouk and likewise is the crowd. With mainly a mix of minimal techno and hip-hop this place is the place to be if you’re into less commercial music.
For life music the Crazy Elephant and the Beer market are good places to go to. Both have an authentic feeling and serve some great drinks. Sometimes when you go to such places the life music, let’s say, disappointing. Each time I go to one of these places I’m surprised with the acts. Most of the time some actual good bands that rock your evening. It’s a good place to start your evening at Clarke Quay I think!
But most important: just stroll around in one of the many streets of Clarke Quay. I mean walking around in this area is an experience of its own. Each venue has it own atmosphere and there is always something to do! Okay it might not be the cheapest place out there, it sure one of the most vibrant and hip places in Singapore.
Singapore Nightlife: Boat Quay
Okay Boat Quay is mostly comprised of restaurants and pubs. Although not the most icon area that set the Singapore nightlife apart of any other city; yet the place to start your evening. It’s quite touristic but this is for a reason. Boat Quay is close to the Central Business District and has one of the most icon views of the city: The Singapore Riverside with all the lights of Clarke Quay in the distance. Boat Quay, as the name reveals, was historically where all the cargo boats in Singapore would stay for the night.
With mostly restaurants now it’s a great place for a romantic dinner. Yet, I prefer Robertson Quay over Boat Quay if it comes to it’s restaurants. Just go there if you can and if you feel like having a drink there, you should. However be sure to make your way through to Clarke Quay and Robertson Quay if you can!
Singapore Nightlife: Chinatown – Students & Expats
Although Clubstreet is 1 street it’s mostly used for pointing out the area in Chinatown that is the place to experience the Singapore Nightlife. It’s the area between Clubstreet and Ann Siang Hill and everything in between. It has some of the restaurants in town with mostly small and intimate Korean BBQ and Japanese BBQ (yes, there is a difference in BBQ!). Although I’m very excited about these places to eat, this article is about the Singapore nightlife huh. Anyway, you could start your evening there for some great food!
From Ann Siang Hill make your way through one of the small streets and head to Clubstreet. (By the way the Maxwell Hawker Center is very close by, so if you get hungry while you make your way through this vibrant neighborhood make sure to pig out on the best deep-fried dumplings in town at Fried Sweet Potato Dumpling).
In the weekends this area frequently hosts very nice street festivals. Although mostly on Sundays, nothings beats a free street festival. They really do a good job here. Check out Amoystreet, Ann Siang Hill or Clubstreet on Facebook for the activities and festivals around!
Ann Siang Hill
Ann Siang Hill is a snake-kind-a street with many nice bars and pubs where you can sit outside and enjoy your drinks. The prices are mostly very affordable and the crowd is rather mixed. A lot of expats and working people go here for after work drinks this street. Ann Siang Hill is still not really touristic and a gem in the Singapore Nightlife. Many student also visit the area for afternoon leisure and weekend fun. So a nice mix of international, local, working and student audience that will never get bored. Okay, it’s might not be the clubbing party scene place like for example Clarke Quay. This place is better than this, you are better than this!
Singapore Nightlife: Clubstreet
Clubstreet, historically the place for the Chinese locals to go party, has been the center of Singapore Nightlife since the 1920’s. Although some bars and clubs are a bit more commercial than it was a few year ago, it’s still very laidback and has an authentic touch to it. Many bars close rather early, but then again it starts rather early at Clubstreet as well. Don’t be afraid to order a drink around 4pm, as the locals will do the same. Watch the street get more busy over the course of the evening when all the working people are off from work. And when the working people leave the students take over. Especially from Wednesday on till the weekend there is a very lively student atmosphere you will find nowhere else in Singapore. And where students come, the beverages are affordable. I like the place! Go there!
Singapore Nightlife: Arabstreet
To make the whole Singapore Nightlife scene complete you got to visit the Arabstreet area as well! Perhaps a bit more quite than the rest of Singapore, perhaps maybe you walk into a few tourists too, perhaps settle down for a drink while shopping at one of the many small independent shops at Haji Lane. If not, why not. Although you will find a great variety of people here, mostly the 30+ year olds go here for a night out. Many lounge bars, pop-up open mics and artistic minded venues are found in this area. Jazzy sounds, loungy atmospheres and quality drinks: that’s what life is all about right? And you will find exactly this at Arabstreet and all the other nice small streets in this area. There are a fair amount of comedy clubs and other stand-up bars here that are nice to visit such as Fight Comic Singapore. Don’t expect the biggest party ever at this area, but go for a nice evening out! You deserve it!